ARE YOU MAKING YOUR KIDS FAT?
Ouch! It's a brutal question. Are you making your child(ren) fat? Well; are you? Don't act like it's not your responsibility. Kids eat what they are taught to eat. Picky eaters eh (HERE)? It's a product of the way you raise them. It's time to own up and make the necessary changes. With 7 out of 10 adults either overweight or obese (not to mention those who are SKINNY FAT), and CDC stats telling us that childhood obesity has increased 300% in the last 3 decades, it's time to get serious about this problem. Otherwise you are condemning your children to live your life. According to the American Heart Association, childhood obesity is now the number one health concern among United States parents --- coming in ahead of old standbys such as bullying, drugs, and cigarette use.
The latest statistics (2008) from the CDC say that
Unfortunately, these 'latest' statistics from the CDC are 5 years old. It's now 2013. Do you think they have improved in the past half decade? What has happened to American children in the last five years? Statistics tell us that childhood obesity has absolutely exploded. And what's worse is that the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) along with other organizations has published research showing that children who are obese children have an 80% chance of ending up obese adults. Yep; if you raise fat children, they are likely to grow up to be fat adults. Furthermore, there are all sorts of studies saying that obese children are at the forefront of a new explosion of "adult" diseases such as heart disease, HIGH CHOLESTEROL, and TYPE II DIABETES. These are diseases that were previously seen only in adult populations.
Here's the thing. This is not rocket science. If you simply sit down and think about it, you already know how to do this. Just go back in time. When I think back to my school days, there were very few overweight kids (or teachers for that matter). Lets look back at some of the things that they were doing and emulate them. Again, you may have to repeat to yourself that you are the parent. But it's true. You are the parent. Your children will do what you train them to do.
This issue reminds me of a young patient that I saw years ago. The child was about five or six years old, and mom brought him in because of a wide variety of health problems (skin, SINUS, BREATHING, BOWELS, EAR INFECTIONS, etc). The little guy was already significantly overweight, and when I asked her what she fed him, I could tell this was a question she would rather I had not asked. The answer I finally got out of her? "The only thing he'll eat is chocolate cake and Cheetos". People; we can do better than that. It's our children's lives. We have to do better than that.
Oh, there are plenty more things you can do to help your children (and yourself) get to and maintain an optimal weight ----- for the rest of their life. This list is simply a starting point. As always, do your own research and formulate your own plan. OK, so your kids aren't toddlers any more. If you love them, you'll make the changes you need to make. No; I never said it would be easy. But the longer you eat in a healthy manner, the easier it gets. Stick with it and the day will come when it will seem easy.
Dr. Schierling completed four years of Kansas State University's five-year Nutrition / Exercise Physiology Program before deciding on a career in Chiropractic. He graduated from Logan Chiropractic College in 1991, and has run a busy clinic in Mountain View, Missouri ever since. He and his wife Amy have four children (three daughters and a son).